The Supreme Court, Mitch McConnell and the Wages of Hypocrisy

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WolvDragon:

He won the electoral college, so yes he deserves to be president.

The EC was built to appease slavery. The EC is unfair and unjust. Trump's presidency just confirms this.

Legal =/= Just. Slavery was legal once. But it was never just, it was never moral, and every single personw who defended slavery on the premise of legality was evil.

crimson5pheonix:

Then it's their fault for only looking at the general election results and not the wealth of information showing the popularity of left-wing ideals.

Polling on specific issues, y'mean? It's a tremendously shaky and insecure basis to judge the mood of a country.

crimson5pheonix:
Or failing to notice that third parties get more votes every election.

Aye-- going from negligible to nearly-negligible.

crimson5pheonix:
Since blaming third parties for your loss, but then turning around and saying that people clearly like right-wing ideals is both incredibly dumb and absolutely on brand for the Democrat party.

I don't believe third parties (or third-party voters) are to blame for the loss of the Democrats. That would be attributing much too much impact.

I'm merely arguing that if a voter rewards the right-wing, then I cannot fault politicians for concluding that the voterbase favours a right-wing platform.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

Then it's their fault for only looking at the general election results and not the wealth of information showing the popularity of left-wing ideals.

Polling on specific issues, y'mean? It's a tremendously shaky and insecure basis to judge the mood of a country.

Oh, and taking votes in a binary election to be an endorsement or admonishment of the issues isn't shaky and insecure? I'd say polling about issues is a better indicator of the country's opinions on issues than trying to suss out the differences between two right-wing candidates.

crimson5pheonix:
Or failing to notice that third parties get more votes every election.

Aye-- going from negligible to nearly-negligible.

An indicator is an indicator.

crimson5pheonix:
Since blaming third parties for your loss, but then turning around and saying that people clearly like right-wing ideals is both incredibly dumb and absolutely on brand for the Democrat party.

I don't believe third parties (or third-party voters) are to blame for the loss of the Democrats. That would be attributing much too much impact.

I'm merely arguing that if a voter rewards the right-wing, then I cannot fault politicians for concluding that the voterbase favours a right-wing platform.

Well it's a nice self-reinforcing system. The Democrats lost and continue to lose because they are seen as corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace. So if they look at everything that's happened, and come to the conclusion that they failed because they weren't right wing enough, then they have shown themselves to be corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace. Or, in other words, the Democrats have to show themselves as being unworthy to control the government to not control the government.

crimson5pheonix:
The Democrats lost and continue to lose because they are seen as corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace.

Lost to a party that is clearly much more corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace, though. The election was close, it's not unreasonable to say that, in hindsight, if Clinton had ever so slightly done more to court the right, got a few thousand more votes, she could have won. Not saying that this is something the Dems should try in future, but it is one lesson someone could take away from this.

Thaluikhain:

crimson5pheonix:
The Democrats lost and continue to lose because they are seen as corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace.

Lost to a party that is clearly much more corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace, though. The election was close, it's not unreasonable to say that, in hindsight, if Clinton had ever so slightly done more to court the right, got a few thousand more votes, she could have won. Not saying that this is something the Dems should try in future, but it is one lesson someone could take away from this.

She lost because she lost the states that have voted Democrat for decades. Conversely, I don't think moving right would have flipped some states that have been voting Republican for decades.

And that would be feeding into "the Democrats don't know how the election works". The number of votes doesn't matter, the distribution of your votes matters. It would take some absolutely willful ignorance to think shifting to the right will give the Dems a win.

crimson5pheonix:
And that would be feeding into "the Democrats don't know how the election works". The number of votes doesn't matter, the distribution of your votes matters. It would take some absolutely willful ignorance to think shifting to the right will give the Dems a win.

True, I should have specified "in the right places" there.

Thaluikhain:

crimson5pheonix:
And that would be feeding into "the Democrats don't know how the election works". The number of votes doesn't matter, the distribution of your votes matters. It would take some absolutely willful ignorance to think shifting to the right will give the Dems a win.

True, I should have specified "in the right places" there.

There is practically nowhere where Dems moving right would have swung the vote in their favor.

crimson5pheonix:

Thaluikhain:

crimson5pheonix:
And that would be feeding into "the Democrats don't know how the election works". The number of votes doesn't matter, the distribution of your votes matters. It would take some absolutely willful ignorance to think shifting to the right will give the Dems a win.

True, I should have specified "in the right places" there.

There is practically nowhere where Dems moving right would have swung the vote in their favor.

They been moving further right since the 90s, and they lost 1000 seats under Barack obama. This tactic hasn't worked.

crimson5pheonix:

Oh, and taking votes in a binary election to be an endorsement or admonishment of the issues isn't shaky and insecure? I'd say polling about issues is a better indicator of the country's opinions on issues than trying to suss out the differences between two right-wing candidates.

Still shaky and insecure, but less so. For one, it draws from a sample size which is far more statistically significant.

For two, and more importantly, victory in those binary elections is the ultimate goal of the politicians in question. So, if something works there, that's all that matters to them. It is to that end they will tailor their platform.

If a voter rewards the further right of the two platforms in the election that actually matters, why should that politician give a toss that the same voter expressed some other opinion in a poll? The voter has shown who they will support in the meaningful election-- the furthest to the right.

crimson5pheonix:

An indicator is an indicator.

A negligible indicator isn't worth paying any attention to.

crimson5pheonix:

Well it's a nice self-reinforcing system. The Democrats lost and continue to lose because they are seen as corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace. So if they look at everything that's happened, and come to the conclusion that they failed because they weren't right wing enough, then they have shown themselves to be corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace. Or, in other words, the Democrats have to show themselves as being unworthy to control the government to not control the government.

Now, I would agree in a way that the Democrats lost because of the reasons you've given. The DNC did show itself to be corrupt (during the Primary campaign), idiotic, out-of-touch, etc., and these elements did erode their support in some quarters.

Yet, it is definitely not the conclusion I drew from the last US election that the US electorate in general has turned against corruption, idiocy, and those who are out-of-touch. I see the last US election as a monumental endorsement of division, hostility and prejudice in federal politics, and a monumental willingness to overlook corruption. Far, far more people are supportive or accepting of a corrupt, elitist platform than I expected.

These characteristics just won an election. And if I wanted to send the message that these characteristics aren't helpful, the last thing I would want to do is reward them in a presidential election.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

Oh, and taking votes in a binary election to be an endorsement or admonishment of the issues isn't shaky and insecure? I'd say polling about issues is a better indicator of the country's opinions on issues than trying to suss out the differences between two right-wing candidates.

Still shaky and insecure, but less so. For one, it draws from a sample size which is far more statistically significant.

For two, and more importantly, victory in those binary elections is the ultimate goal of the politicians in question. So, if something works there, that's all that matters to them. It is to that end they will tailor their platform.

If a voter rewards the further right of the two platforms in the election that actually matters, why should that politician give a toss that the same voter expressed some other opinion in a poll? The voter has shown who they will support in the meaningful election-- the furthest to the right.

crimson5pheonix:

An indicator is an indicator.

A negligible indicator isn't worth paying any attention to.

crimson5pheonix:

Well it's a nice self-reinforcing system. The Democrats lost and continue to lose because they are seen as corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace. So if they look at everything that's happened, and come to the conclusion that they failed because they weren't right wing enough, then they have shown themselves to be corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch with the American populace. Or, in other words, the Democrats have to show themselves as being unworthy to control the government to not control the government.

Now, I would agree in a way that the Democrats lost because of the reasons you've given. The DNC did show itself to be corrupt (during the Primary campaign), idiotic, out-of-touch, etc., and these elements did erode their support in some quarters.

Yet, it is definitely not the conclusion I drew from the last US election that the US electorate in general has turned against corruption, idiocy, and those who are out-of-touch. I see the last US election as a monumental endorsement of division, hostility and prejudice in federal politics, and a monumental willingness to overlook corruption. Far, far more people are supportive or accepting of a corrupt, elitist platform than I expected.

These characteristics just won an election. And if I wanted to send the message that these characteristics aren't helpful, the last thing I would want to do is reward them in a presidential election.

Well I think my position can be summed up as: both candidates were corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch so there was no choice against that other than third parties. If the Democrats look at all this data and come to the same conclusion as you, then they are doomed to fail and would deserve to fail as well. If that is the conclusion they reach, it would be harmful to elect them and America would be better served by them leaving politics entirely and being replaced by people who recognize what the people want.

Silvanus:
Still shaky and insecure, but less so. For one, it draws from a sample size which is far more statistically significant.

Not really, especially when you consider that these opinion polls often have much greater differences in their results (numbers like 65% vs 20% instead of 49% vs 48%). When you're in the thousands or above, sample size really isn't the issue when it comes to statistical interpretation.

So are we just gonna blame the Democrats for everything and merrily forget that the GOP is the party of voter suppression and Gerrymandering?

crimson5pheonix:

Well I think my position can be summed up as: both candidates were corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch so there was no choice against that other than third parties. If the Democrats look at all this data and come to the same conclusion as you, then they are doomed to fail and would deserve to fail as well.

This is still proceeding as though there is no difference between a corrupt, harmful party and a far more corrupt, far more harmful party. There is a large gap, and that gap determines peoples' lives and livelihoods.

The last election served as an immense validation of division, scapegoating, and corruption in federal politics (in the sense of sending the message that such is acceptable; not in the sense of actually making it valid).

Seanchaidh:

Not really, especially when you consider that these opinion polls often have much greater differences in their results (numbers like 65% vs 20% instead of 49% vs 48%). When you're in the thousands or above, sample size really isn't the issue when it comes to statistical interpretation.

Well, then we have the other question I raised. The primary goal of a candidate is for their platform to succeed at the actual election.

If a voter supports left-wing policies in opinion polls, and proceeds to intentionally reward the furthest right of the two candidates at any meaningful election, why in hell should that candidate pay attention to the former and not the latter?

Silvanus:

If a voter supports left-wing policies in opinion polls, and proceeds to intentionally reward the furthest right of the two candidates at any meaningful election, why in hell should that candidate pay attention to the former and not the latter?

Because they are smart enough to realize that they haven't been offering the left-wing policies in the opinion polls and that they shouldn't expect the support of people who they haven't been attempting in any meaningful way to represent.

If they aren't smart enough to realize that, they should fuck off out of politics.

Seanchaidh:

Silvanus:

If a voter supports left-wing policies in opinion polls, and proceeds to intentionally reward the furthest right of the two candidates at any meaningful election, why in hell should that candidate pay attention to the former and not the latter?

Because they are smart enough to realize that they haven't been offering the left-wing policies in the opinion polls and that they shouldn't expect the support of people who they haven't been attempting in any meaningful way to represent.

If they aren't smart enough to realize that, they should fuck off out of politics.

My problem with this is that you're never going to get a candidate who you agree with 100%, and thus you're never going to get a candidate who represents you 100%. The nature of a democracy means that politicians will sometimes adopt policies you dislike, usually in order to please another voter who has different policy objectives to you.

In the case of the Democrats, it is debatable whether they could win on a full-bore democratic socialist platform. I certainly think it's possible and even likely, but we can't say for sure until it happens.

The thing is that there's (obviously) an internal divide amongst the Democrats, between the democratic socialists like Sanders and the centrist neoliberals like Clinton. To please the democratic socialists, a candidate risks alienating the neoliberals - who may not necessarily want to pay much higher tax rates to pay for something like universal tuition or Medicare-for-All. That presents democratic socialist candidates with a conundrum; campaign specifically in very safe seats, or else risk losing a chunk of your voting demographic and be required to - paradoxically - lure voters from the "economic nationalist" side of the platform. Now, not every election can be held in a safe seat; presidential elections, in particular, are nationwide.

So for a democratic socialist presidential candidate to win, they need to either avoid alienating neoliberal Democrats - who, I'm sad to say, still exist and still vote - or else go full-populist and try and build a coalition out of people on the left and right who share a common desire for a stronger welfare system, a more regulated economy, a thinner wealth gap and stronger regulation of a runaway financial sector. Now, that first path - where you try to find the golden mean that keeps the party together - is difficult. But in modern America, the second path is nigh-impossible. Partisan loyalty is so strong that the best you can hope for is to depress the opposing side's voter turnout rather than actually win their votes - this cost Clinton the election, because she didn't have the full support of the Democratic base due to her reputation and her actions in the primaries.

Therefore, most presidential candidates try the first option; threading the needle and sewing together two disagreeable halves of the political party into a winning voter bloc. The problem with that, for you specifically, is that it means you will never get a presidential candidate who gives you everything you want - because someone else on your side wants something different, and the candidate needs their support as well as yours. Your priorities are economic and socialist in nature. Hypothetically, one could build a socialist coalition out of Berniecrats and disaffected blue-collar workers on the right; they have the same economic priorities. But it's unlikely to happen, because candidates know that it'd be easier for them to try and thread that needle than to overcome the acrimonious partisan divide in US politics. So either the neoliberals give in entirely - and I agree that it's possible that the neoliberal wing of the Democratic party could get marginalised over the coming years - and commit to support a full-bore democratic socialist with a wish-list of policies that gives you personally everything you want, or you just suck it up and settle for a guy who gives you half or two-thirds of what you want, in the hopes of avoiding a guy that gives you exactly none of what you want.

I'm lucky. I live in a country with a parliament and preferential voting, so I can go to the ballot booth and cast my 1-vote for the Greens and then put Labor as my 2-vote. (Which I will 100% be doing next election, because Bill Shorten can lick my frenulum.) You guys won't be able to do that unless you seriously overhaul your election procedure. But in order to do that, you will need to win elections in Congress and get a President who can sign the bill into law, and no Republican is ever going to do that for you - but a neoliberal Democrat might, because preferential voting will benefit them as well in the short term by removing the risk of splitting the vote.

erttheking:
So are we just gonna blame the Democrats for everything and merrily forget that the GOP is the party of voter suppression and Gerrymandering?

Dems do something bad = fucking Dems!

GOP does something bad = well the Dems shouldn't have made them do it.

Seanchaidh:

Because they are smart enough to realize that they haven't been offering the left-wing policies in the opinion polls and that they shouldn't expect the support of people who they haven't been attempting in any meaningful way to represent.

You've been explaining that you're happier to reward those who represent your platform least. As a result, those who don't represent you meaningfully actually can rely on your help.

Seanchaidh:
If they aren't smart enough to realize that, they should fuck off out of politics.

You're expecting people to take away a message that's intensely counter-intuitive: the notion that politicians should look to those we reward at the ballot box, and conclude that the opposite is what we really want.

It's not stupidity to fail to take that way. It's self-immolating nonsense to begin with.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

Well I think my position can be summed up as: both candidates were corrupt, idiotic, and out of touch so there was no choice against that other than third parties. If the Democrats look at all this data and come to the same conclusion as you, then they are doomed to fail and would deserve to fail as well.

This is still proceeding as though there is no difference between a corrupt, harmful party and a far more corrupt, far more harmful party. There is a large gap, and that gap determines peoples' lives and livelihoods.

The last election served as an immense validation of division, scapegoating, and corruption in federal politics (in the sense of sending the message that such is acceptable; not in the sense of actually making it valid).

Yup, they shouldn't have run Hillary, should they have? And now people keep saying she won the popular vote, making it look like that's what people want.

crimson5pheonix:

Yup, they shouldn't have run Hillary, should they have? And now people keep saying she won the popular vote, making it look like that's what people want.

This reflects on the DNC.

It was the electorate, though, who chose to reward the candidate most unashamedly guilty of division, scapegoating, etc in the Presidential. It is that that served to validate those tactics to a far greater degree.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

Yup, they shouldn't have run Hillary, should they have? And now people keep saying she won the popular vote, making it look like that's what people want.

This reflects on the DNC.

It was the electorate, though, who chose to reward the candidate most unashamedly guilty of division, scapegoating, etc in the Presidential. It is that that served to validate those tactics to a far greater degree.

I feel like you already answered this and then I responded and then everything was deleted. Though I could have been hallucinating.

Anyway, since the Republicans didn't get a huge turnout and it was just the Democrats bleeding voters, they shouldn't reasonably reach that conclusion. If they do, they deserve to lose until people who don't have their heads up their asses start running. Because people who take that lesson from the loss would be bad for the country.

Silvanus:

Seanchaidh:

Because they are smart enough to realize that they haven't been offering the left-wing policies in the opinion polls and that they shouldn't expect the support of people who they haven't been attempting in any meaningful way to represent.

You've been explaining that you're happier to reward those who represent your platform least. As a result, those who don't represent you meaningfully actually can rely on your help.

Seanchaidh:
If they aren't smart enough to realize that, they should fuck off out of politics.

You're expecting people to take away a message that's intensely counter-intuitive: the notion that politicians should look to those we reward at the ballot box, and conclude that the opposite is what we really want.

It's not stupidity to fail to take that way. It's self-immolating nonsense to begin with.

Any politician incapable of figuring out that politics is by necessity more complicated than can be apprehended purely by the results of two party elections should fuck right off out of politics. Maybe they will if enough people limit their votes to candidates who aren't paid to be morons.

crimson5pheonix:

I feel like you already answered this and then I responded and then everything was deleted. Though I could have been hallucinating.

Anyway, since the Republicans didn't get a huge turnout and it was just the Democrats bleeding voters, they shouldn't reasonably reach that conclusion. If they do, they deserve to lose until people who don't have their heads up their asses start running. Because people who take that lesson from the loss would be bad for the country.

Whether from the Democrats bleeding voters or the Republicans gaining them, what does it practically matter to the candidate's platform when the end result is the same?

If the furthest right-wing candidate can rely on getting rewarded by either phenomenon, then the tide is only going to push in one direction.

Seanchaidh:

Any politician incapable of figuring out that politics is by necessity more complicated than can be apprehended purely by the results of two party elections should fuck right off out of politics. Maybe they will if enough people limit their votes to candidates who aren't paid to be morons.

I'm sure they're capable of figuring that out. I'm also sure that these complexities are about as relevant as a Buzzfeed straw poll when compared to the actual election. A candidate isn't going to care if they see a policy getting endorsed in an opinion poll, but the opposite is consistently rewarded at the ballot box. Only one of them decides who actually gets to do anything; a politician is going to care about one more than the other.

You're assuming that a difference in prioritisation must boil down to a failure of intelligence, which is the oldest trap in the book.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

I feel like you already answered this and then I responded and then everything was deleted. Though I could have been hallucinating.

Anyway, since the Republicans didn't get a huge turnout and it was just the Democrats bleeding voters, they shouldn't reasonably reach that conclusion. If they do, they deserve to lose until people who don't have their heads up their asses start running. Because people who take that lesson from the loss would be bad for the country.

Whether from the Democrats bleeding voters or the Republicans gaining them, what does it practically matter to the candidate's platform when the end result is the same?

If the furthest right-wing candidate can rely on getting rewarded by either phenomenon, then the tide is only going to push in one direction.

Seanchaidh:

Any politician incapable of figuring out that politics is by necessity more complicated than can be apprehended purely by the results of two party elections should fuck right off out of politics. Maybe they will if enough people limit their votes to candidates who aren't paid to be morons.

I'm sure they're capable of figuring that out. I'm also sure that these complexities are about as relevant as a Buzzfeed straw poll when compared to the actual election. A candidate isn't going to care if they see a policy getting endorsed in an opinion poll, but the opposite is consistently rewarded at the ballot box. Only one of them decides who actually gets to do anything; a politician is going to care about one more than the other.

You're assuming that a difference in prioritisation must boil down to a failure of intelligence, which is the oldest trap in the book.

"People clearly want A when asked in opinion polls. I offer B. A candidate offering C won the election with about 25% of eligible voters. Guess they were lying and the people really just want C! What can you do? Try offering A? Don't be ridiculous!"

You made it about intelligence when you kept harping on about election results being so terribly 'counterintuitive'; kindly don't project what you now recognize to be a mistake onto me. Do I think intelligence is why the politicians representing the Democratic Party are spineless, craven, and unable to fight for anything their constituents want? No, it's because I think they are paid to be just as they are; the establishment of both parties actively works against those who aren't as adept at raising funds from corporations (or worse, refuse to raise funds from corporations at all!) And until they advocate at the very least taking a chunk out of corporate power (such as by, for example, destroying the health insurance industry by instituting single-payer) then I'll happily throw my vote elsewhere. If your candidacy doesn't include taking a substantial measure of power out of the hands of capital, you're not worth the time of day.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

I feel like you already answered this and then I responded and then everything was deleted. Though I could have been hallucinating.

Anyway, since the Republicans didn't get a huge turnout and it was just the Democrats bleeding voters, they shouldn't reasonably reach that conclusion. If they do, they deserve to lose until people who don't have their heads up their asses start running. Because people who take that lesson from the loss would be bad for the country.

Whether from the Democrats bleeding voters or the Republicans gaining them, what does it practically matter to the candidate's platform when the end result is the same?

If the furthest right-wing candidate can rely on getting rewarded by either phenomenon, then the tide is only going to push in one direction.

That's a massive difference. If the Republicans win on a big swell of voters, then you might be able to say their policies are popular. But if you lose on hemorrhaging voters, it should be obvious that what you're doing is unpopular with your base. So if you lose because you lost voters, but your opponent didn't gain voters, then it should logically follow that their policies aren't suddenly popular, you just suck. I mean, if the further right candidate couldn't get more votes, why should you push right? This is the example of fucking moronic policy making that got Democrats in this position in the first place.

Silvanus:
This reflects on the DNC.

It was the electorate, though, who chose to reward the candidate most unashamedly guilty of division, scapegoating, etc in the Presidential. It is that that served to validate those tactics to a far greater degree.

One of the tricks about winning elections in the USA is not necessarily about claiming the middle ground, it's enthusing and mobilising your base. Hillary ultimately did not do well in this regard.

crimson5pheonix:

That's a massive difference. If the Republicans win on a big swell of voters, then you might be able to say their policies are popular. But if you lose on hemorrhaging voters, it should be obvious that what you're doing is unpopular with your base. So if you lose because you lost voters, but your opponent didn't gain voters, then it should logically follow that their policies aren't suddenly popular, you just suck. I mean, if the further right candidate couldn't get more votes, why should you push right? This is the example of fucking moronic policy making that got Democrats in this position in the first place.

There's a distinction in explanatory power; there's not a difference in outcome.

Let's keep in mind; Seanchaidh did not merely state that he wanted to avoid rewarding the DNC; he stated that it was preferable to reward the Republicans. This is a pretty central reason for my disagreement, let's not forget. The conclusion from this rationale is not merely that the DNC's platform sucks; it's that the voter believes the Republican platform is more deserving of that support. There is no magical message on the bottom of the ballot paper that communicates why a vote has been withheld.

Agema:

One of the tricks about winning elections in the USA is not necessarily about claiming the middle ground, it's enthusing and mobilising your base. Hillary ultimately did not do well in this regard.

Fully agreed. The election still served to legitimise those characteristics in a political platform-- social division, political corruption, demonisation.

Certainly, only 24% or so of the American population actually voted for the winning candidate, but ~42% abstained (or didn't bother to turn up). This reflects poorly on the DNC for a shockingly shitty campaign, certainly; it also demonstrates to me that a huge swathe of the electorate don't give a toss. It's a shrug towards those the victor has been attacking throughout his campaign, and it's a shrug towards those having their rights and workplace protections stripped away.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

That's a massive difference. If the Republicans win on a big swell of voters, then you might be able to say their policies are popular. But if you lose on hemorrhaging voters, it should be obvious that what you're doing is unpopular with your base. So if you lose because you lost voters, but your opponent didn't gain voters, then it should logically follow that their policies aren't suddenly popular, you just suck. I mean, if the further right candidate couldn't get more votes, why should you push right? This is the example of fucking moronic policy making that got Democrats in this position in the first place.

There's a distinction in explanatory power; there's not a difference in outcome.

Let's keep in mind; Seanchaidh did not merely state that he wanted to avoid rewarding the DNC; he stated that it was preferable to reward the Republicans. This is a pretty central reason for my disagreement, let's not forget. The conclusion from this rationale is not merely that the DNC's platform sucks; it's that the voter believes the Republican platform is more deserving of that support. There is no magical message on the bottom of the ballot paper that communicates why a vote has been withheld.

Alright. Follow the conclusion then. Will the Democrats get more votes if they push right?

crimson5pheonix:

Alright. Follow the conclusion then. Will the Democrats get more votes if they push right?

I don't know.

A big part of me-- the part with a germ of faith in humanity-- believes they wouldn't gain votes if they pushed right. Yet, I'm beginning to think the USA is far further to the right than I used to think.

This is not a conclusion reached from the number of people voting Republican; it's a conclusion reached from the number of people who don't care enough whether an extremist inhabits the White House to even vote.

It's been an intensely depressing year. 24% of American voters voted for a candidate who promised to take away the right to marry from people like me. That's not a majority, sure; but 42% of American voters merely didn't give a shit whether I lost that right or not.

How should I take that? It looks like callous disregard, and an acceptance of prejudice.

Seanchaidh:

"People clearly want A when asked in opinion polls. I offer B. A candidate offering C won the election with about 25% of eligible voters. Guess they were lying and the people really just want C! What can you do? Try offering A? Don't be ridiculous!"

D'you know how popular renationalising the railways is in the UK? Very popular. In fact, going by opinion polls, the current Labour Party platform-- the one on which they fought the last election-- is a great deal more popular than the Conservative Party platform, when it's divorced from Party affiliation.

Are the railways renationalised yet? Or are opinion polls just really goddamn shaky ground on which to make predictions?

Seanchaidh:
Do I think intelligence is why the politicians representing the Democratic Party are spineless, craven, and unable to fight for anything their constituents want? No, it's because I think they are paid to be just as they are; the establishment of both parties actively works against those who aren't as adept at raising funds from corporations (or worse, refuse to raise funds from corporations at all!) And until they advocate at the very least taking a chunk out of corporate power (such as by, for example, destroying the health insurance industry by instituting single-payer) then I'll happily throw my vote elsewhere. If your candidacy doesn't include taking a substantial measure of power out of the hands of capital, you're not worth the time of day.

Oh, I know that. I just hope this is clearly noted in the small-print jotted at the bottom of your ballot, because otherwise, they're not going to know.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

Alright. Follow the conclusion then. Will the Democrats get more votes if they push right?

I don't know.

A big part of me-- the part with a germ of faith in humanity-- believes they wouldn't gain votes if they pushed right. Yet, I'm beginning to think the USA is far further to the right than I used to think.

This is not a conclusion reached from the number of people voting Republican; it's a conclusion reached from the number of people who don't care enough whether an extremist inhabits the White House to even vote.

It's been an intensely depressing year. 24% of American voters voted for a candidate who promised to take away the right to marry from people like me. That's not a majority, sure; but 42% of American voters merely didn't give a shit whether I lost that right or not.

How should I take that? It looks like callous disregard, and an acceptance of prejudice.

That 42% didn't have a horse in this race. 42% of people didn't have a reason to vote Democrat. That 42% don't want Republicans either, so 42% won't vote for Democrats if they push farther right.

So if the Democrats can't get these votes by going right or staying where they are, where should they go?

crimson5pheonix:

That 42% didn't have a horse in this race. 42% of people didn't have a reason to vote Democrat. That 42% don't want Republicans either, so 42% won't vote for Democrats if they push farther right.

I know they don't have a horse in this race. I'm explaining why their decision indicates to me a sheer disregard, and that this in turn legitimises political corruption and divisiveness in the winning candidate.

crimson5pheonix:
So if the Democrats can't get these votes by going right or staying where they are, where should they go?

As I said above: I don't know. I would like to believe that they would be picked up by a leftward shift, but I also can't shift the idea that these people simply do not care. The prospect of things getting substantially worse didn't motivate them, so I'm finding it hard to believe that they care very much about what's at stake.

Silvanus:

crimson5pheonix:

That 42% didn't have a horse in this race. 42% of people didn't have a reason to vote Democrat. That 42% don't want Republicans either, so 42% won't vote for Democrats if they push farther right.

I know they don't have a horse in this race. I'm explaining why their decision indicates to me a sheer disregard, and that this in turn legitimises political corruption and divisiveness in the winning candidate.

crimson5pheonix:
So if the Democrats can't get these votes by going right or staying where they are, where should they go?

As I said above: I don't know. I would like to believe that they would be picked up by a leftward shift, but I also can't shift the idea that these people simply do not care. The prospect of things getting substantially worse didn't motivate them, so I'm finding it hard to believe that they care very much about what's at stake.

That won't motivate people for who things were already substantively getting worse over the last few decades. Would you be motivated under the threat of dying faster?

What would motivate people is improving things.

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